Drum It Up! Steel Drum Industry News, Trends, and Issues

Archive for March, 2021

Planes, Trains, and Automobiles!

March 30th, 2021 by Dean Ricker

Filed under: DOT/UN, HazMat, Skolnik Newsletter

As a result of our February 2021 newsletter, we were learned that many of our “non-hazmat” readers did not know that the steel drum industry is regulated by the Pipeline for Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), an arm of the United States Department of Transportation (DOT). When most people think of the DOT, they naturally think of transportation; planes, trains, automobiles, ships and highways. But the DOT also regulates items classified as dangerous goods, or hazardous materials, that are packaged and transported on public right of way via those planes, trains, automobiles, ships and highways.

The United States Department of Transportation was created by act of President Lyndon Baines Johnson in 1966. The purpose of the Department of Transportation was/ is to create, develop, and coordinate policies to provide an efficient and economical national transportation system. This system will incorporate respect for the environment, regards the needs of the people, and will employ and monitor national defense of the transportation system. This is the primary organization at the cabinet level to shape and administer policies that protect and enhance the safety, adequacy and efficiency of the United States transportation services and system.

The primary regulatory vehicle used to govern the safe transport of dangerous goods is Title 49 of the US Code of Federal Regulations. CFR Title 49 – Transportation, is one of fifty titles comprising the United States Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). Title 49 is the principal set of rules and regulations issued by the Departments of Transportation and Homeland Security, and other federal agencies of the United States regarding transportation and transportation related security. Publication of Title 49 began in 1938, at which point it was entitled Transportation and Railroads.

Part 178 of Title 49 CFR prescribes the manufacturing and testing specifications for packaging and containers used for the transportation of hazardous materials in commerce. The requirements of this part apply to packagings manufactured to a DOT specification, or to a UN standard for packagings manufactured within the United States. A manufacturer of a packaging is subject to the requirements of this part and is responsible for compliance with these requirements. However, any person who performs a function prescribed in this part shall also perform that function in accordance with this part. Part 178 also requires that a packaging be marked with a DOT specification or UN standard marking. Marking of the packaging with the appropriate DOT or UN markings is the certification that all requirements of the DOT specification, or UN standard, including performance tests, are met and all functions performed by, the person or entity whose name or symbol appears as part of the marking conform to requirements specified in this part.

See the complete 49 CFR here.

HazChem Environmental and the Salvage Drum Rescue

March 23rd, 2021 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: HazMat, Salvage Drum, Skolnik Newsletter

With thanks to our long time customer, HazChem Environmental, we just learned about a dangerous goods spill incident in which our (Skolnik) 85 Gallon Salvage Drums came to the rescue to quickly and efficiently contain a potentially dangerous situation.

On January 22, 2021, one of the largest freight-transport companies in the world called HazChem Environmental at 4:57 a.m. with a major problem. “Resin had spilled on a trailer at one of their Chicagoland terminals,” explained Chris Johnson, Co-Owner of HazChem. Overexposure to resin may affect the central nervous system causing dizziness, headache or nausea. It can also have a negative impact on hearing, and can cause respiratory tract damage. The incident was that one damaged 55-gallon open-top-steel drum was causing the problem. There was a small puncture in the bottom of the drum, about the size of a nail-hole. “Once our crew arrived at this spill, they did exactly what they are trained to do,” said Alan Shapiro, Co-Owner of HazChem. “They did a thorough check of all the drums containing Resin to see if there was any leak. They inspected the drums by hand, then lifted both up with a forklift to see if there was leakage from both drums, and there was!” “With both drums leaking, Shapiro said, “we had a sufficient amount of 85-gallon Overpack Steel Drums to solve the problem.”

The HazChem crew at this particular spill put both leaking drums into Skolnik Overpacks, sealed them up and put them in the HazChem Emergency Truck. The onsite crew then finished cleaning the inside of the resin-filled trailer with oil dry, pads, shovels and scrappers. The crew then cleaned up the back of the trailer and the ground outside which had also been covered with the spilled resin.

A good end to a potentially dangerous outcome. Our thanks to HazChem!

Check out the fully story here:

Simply Secured: UN Rated Open Head Drums with Lever Lock Lids

March 17th, 2021 by Natalie Mueller

Filed under: Industry News

A critical component for drums is proper, secure closure. The security of the closure is an obvious goal, but often overlooked is ensuring you have the correct configuration for your materials. For materials that you need regular access to in the container, a UN rated open head drum with lever lock lid may be the ticket. 

Open head drums have a removable cover and a seamed bottom. They are popular choices for solids and viscous liquids such as soil absorbents, syrups, glues, oils, etc. Whereas a tight head drum has a very small opening, with open head drums, you can remove the whole top of the drum, making it perfect for situations where you might need access to the contents, either for frequent addition or extraction.

A leverlock closure is an upgrade from the older bolt style closure. Merely slip it over the cover and snap it shut. No torque, no bolt, no nut and no tools necessary. It’s fast and ergonomic. Don’t take our word for it, see it in action here.

Skolnik offers UN Rated Leverlock open head drums in 5 to 85 US gallon capacities. Leverlock closures are quick to install, easy to open and re-close, and able to be lock-sealed for permanent protection. The locking latch even accepts tamper-resistant seals, so you can be sure your dangerous goods are safely contained.

Cheers! How a COVID toast revealed a trend.

March 16th, 2021 by Jon Stein

Filed under: Skolnik Newsletter, Wine

Cheers! Two nights ago, my wife and I raised our glasses of champagne and celebrated receiving our second COVID vaccine shots. The bottle we opened was from Mousse Fils, located in the village of Cuisles, France. Four years ago, we had had the pleasure of touring the vineyard and enjoyed a tasting with the owner, Cedric Mousse. And since then, we have celebrated every New Years’ and special occasion with this champagne. During our travels, (back when we could), we picked up a supply of this champagne at wine stores in New York and San Francisco. Unfortunately, after our recent “COVID” New Years’ eve, we ran out. Days later, searching the internet, I located a source, and six days later we had our champagne! It was not my first online wine purchase, but it made me curious as to whether I was part of a growing trend?

Writing in Wine Business Monthly, Andrew Adams reports that: “Winery direct-to-consumer (DTC) shipments and off-premise sales saw double-digit gains at the start of 2021. DTC shipments grew 21% to nearly $165 million in January, while off-premise sales increased 23%. “All price tiers again north of $11 continued to grow at a rapid pace,” relates Danny Brager in his regular monthly report on the shipping channels, which are tracked through a collaboration of analytics companies.

Brager who is a former Nielsen Vice President and now runs his beverage alcohol consultancy said Napa and Oregon wines were “standout” leaders in growth as well as rosé and sparkling wine followed by Sauvignon Blanc. While sales growth had slowed during November and December it appears at-home celebrations in January helped push growth back to levels previously seen from June through October. Here at Skolnik Industries, you’ll say “cheers” to our stainless steel wine barrels. Note that our stainless steel wine barrels are reusable, easy to clean, and recyclable at the end of their service life. Check out the full line of our Stainless Steel Wine Drums here.